Successfully reported this slideshow.
We use your LinkedIn profile and activity data to personalize ads and to show you more relevant ads. You can change your ad preferences anytime.

Evaluating visitor experience in foyers

3,240 views

Published on

This presentation summarises the visitor evaluation from the installations carried out as part of the AHRC Transforming Thresholds Project at the Petrie Museum of Egyptian Archeology (effect of image and sound) and New Walk Museum and Art Gallery Leicester (effect on invisible theatre).

Published in: Business, Technology
  • Be the first to comment

Evaluating visitor experience in foyers

  1. 1. Evaluating Visitor Experience in Museum Foyers AHRC Research Network: Transforming Thresholds Dr Ruth Page and Dr Ross Parry, University of Leicester
  2. 2. Rationale for the project • Museum Foyers are significant spaces – For visitors’ onsite engagement – For museums to establish their identity • But we don’t know that much about them – Academic research – How visitors perceive and behave in them
  3. 3. Transforming Thresholds as a collaborative project • Academics – Different disciplines – Different institutions and research centres • Museum partners – Different scale of Museum (Museum of London; British Museum; Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery; Leicestershire Arts and Museums; Petrie Museum of Egyptian Archeology) • Commercial partners
  4. 4. Aims of the project • share and develop emerging fieldwork about visitor experience in a range of foyers to identify core principles for scaffolding visitors’ first on-site experience of museums • develop methodology for measuring visitor behaviour in threshold spaces
  5. 5. Can we draw on ideas from • Eye-gaze • Market research • Product development Retail E-learning • What do people learn? Gaming Performance • Reviews • Audience engagement
  6. 6. Complex range of visitor needs in the foyer
  7. 7. ‘Evaluation’ from different perspectives • Purpose of the evaluation – As part of the design process • Gaming – beta testing • Film – director’s interventions – As market research • Retail – As ‘academic’ projects • How do people use technologies? And how can this knowledge help improve the technology/space • Visitor experience • Gathering v. Eliciting techniques
  8. 8. Challenges of using eliciting techniques in foyers • Surveys, polls, interviews, comments forms • Thresholds may not be a place to dwell to answer questions – Health and safety issues – Transactions that *need* to take place are more important (purchasing tickets, security checks) – Visitor has not experienced enough of the museum space to answer any questions – Their attention is on where they are going, not where they are
  9. 9. Challenges of using observation techniques in foyers • Where to position cameras or observers? • If you are using eye-tracking glasses (or similar) you have to put these on/calibrate them before the visitor enters the space – Recruit in advance? – Observers’ paradox? • Restrictions on the GPS (works outside) but inaccuracy of RFID tagging (inside) • Ethics of covert recording
  10. 10. Research design • What you want to find out determines the methods you need to do the research  • Our project has been trying to – Find out more about visitor experience in different foyers – Evaluate our evaluation tools • Used a range of eliciting and observation methods in three museum entrance spaces • As much to find out what kinds of evaluation tools were useful as developing fieldwork
  11. 11. Case study #1: Petrie museum
  12. 12. Main questions • Could we prepare visitors better for entering the gallery space by adding thematically appropriate images and sound to the stairwell? • What was role did the images play in preparing visitors? • What role did the soundscape play in preparing visitors?
  13. 13. Evaluating the impact on visitor experience • Survey – pre-installation and post-installation – surveys completed mid-visit – Mixture of quantitative and qualitative questions • Visitors wore a mobile camcorder – Inspired by eye-tracking research from retail – pre-installation and post-installation – What information could we gather about what people actually looked at and their dwell time
  14. 14. What we hoped to do but did not • Test whether there was an actual impact on how visitors engaged with gallery exhibits • -iSwipe polling stations • Visitors could vote – Which of these objects do you remember seeing a picture of on the stairs? • What went wrong – The owner of the iSwipes did not leave them with a power supply or stands!
  15. 15. A snapshot
  16. 16. Analysis of the visitor response • Survey data was collated • Qualitative responses were coded – Sentiment – Themes • Respondents and results from the Survey
  17. 17. Who did we interview? • • • • • • 41 visitors (week 1 – 33% of the footfall) 45 visitors (week 2 – 30% of the footfall) 83.5% were first time visitors Week 1: Women (63%), Men (37%) Week 2: Women (49%), Men (51%) Purpose for visit – Entertainment (37%); Research (17%); Unplanned (27%)
  18. 18. Sentiment analysis (Description of stairwell as a whole) 70% 60% 50% 40% Positive 30% Negative Neutral 20% 10% 0% Week 1 Week 2
  19. 19. Sample responses (pre-installation) • It was dark and narrow, I was looking at the steps • Very utilitarian, like the back stairs to an office. You just watch the stairs. • Depressing, unwelcoming, totally unexciting • Sparse, you would expect a facsimile or a hieyroglyph. I was not sure I was even going the right way
  20. 20. Themes in the pre-installation feedback 18 16 14 12 10 8 6 4 2 0
  21. 21. Other suggestions • Themes of transit • Utility – function on the stairwell as a functional space • Anticipation – Images/quotes might generate some expectation • Attention – Desire to look v. Not being able to stop and look
  22. 22. What did people remember seeing? Week 1 Petrie's portrait 8% Quote 2 22% Quote 1 23% Door sign 30% Petrie Logo 17%
  23. 23. What did people remember seeing? Week 2 Stalae frieze, 11 Gold jewellery, 5 Egyptian spoons, 7 Door sign, 25 Pottery fragment, 25 Petrie on dig, 23 Petrie Logo, 22 Quote 1, 24 Petrie's portrait, 31 Quote 2, 29
  24. 24. A shift in salience?
  25. 25. How well did the images/signs prepare you? 45% 40% 35% 30% 1 (very well) 25% 2 20% 3 15% 4 10% 5 (not at all) 5% 0% Week 1 Week 2
  26. 26. How did the images help prepare you? (Week 2 responses) • We knew what we were coming to see. It was good to have something to make the transition from the modern world to research • Petrie image maybe turns your attention on link to name of the museum • Looked as though the collection had spilled down the stairs. Good as intro, bad as liminal experience
  27. 27. Additional themes • Positive comments – Suggestions that they were helping the visitors to ‘look better’ – Role of images in confirming the identity of the museum • Negative comments – Resistance to the use of the space as a ‘canvas’ • Neutral comments – Experience of stairwell as a space (links with utility theme)
  28. 28. Reactions to the images (Week 2 responses) 70% 60% 50% 40% 30% 20% 10% 0% Positive Negative Neutral
  29. 29. Did you notice the sound? No 44% Yes 56%
  30. 30. Sentiment in responses to sound 90% 80% 70% 60% 50% 40% 30% 20% 10% 0% Positive Negative Neutral
  31. 31. How did the sound help prepare you? Practicalities 4% Information 29% Ambience 67%
  32. 32. Quotes: relating sounds to ambience • I really liked them. They get you into the right mood • There was a sense of exploration/adventure, it was good not to be too prescriptive, discovering museum on ones own, sounds were discreet • Sense of theatricality, put you in a different space
  33. 33. Quotes: relating sounds to information • It made me think of.... – A dig in Egypt – Like being in a pyramid – Nile scenes • Confirmed I was in correct place - archaeology museum • Music instantly said 'this is what you are here to see,' geographical and temporal location, gave an idea of what you were coming to see
  34. 34. Themes in responses • Sound as evoking content – Egyptian / archeology • Sound as evoking emotion – Reassuring/relaxing/calming • Evidence of immersion/flow • Capacity to generate a sense of space – Imagined spaces (markets, Nile etc) – Physical spaces (museum and its gallery)
  35. 35. How would I do the survey differently? • Carry out evaluation in separate phases – No image, no sound – Just sound added – Just images added – Both image and sound added • Other information we should have captured – Were visitors on their own or in a group • General principles: matching the questions more exactly, limitations of Likert scales
  36. 36. Other technical adjustments • Monitor the noise level during the experiment for the following conditions: – unoccupied but with the soundscape, – occupied with the soundscape, – occupied without the soundscape. • With data for these conditions we could have scientifically excluded responses from samples where the occupational noise exceeded the soundscape by a known / set threshold.
  37. 37. Participants for the Looxcie footage • Recruited in advance • Five in week 1 (one no show, one the recording cut out half way through) • Seven in week 2 • Unanticipated issues – Although I asked people to book appointments, several turned up at the same time – They did not want to take the Looxcie off! – Difficult for those wearing glasses
  38. 38. Coding process • Looxcie footage was edited using Windows Media Player • Data coded – time taken to walk through stairwell, – approximate direction of gaze – visual stimulus in the line of vision collated • Cross referenced against the survey results from the same participants
  39. 39. Data from the video footage • Speed of moving through the stairwell – Week 1: average time 25.4 seconds – Week 2: average time 34.6 seconds • Overall direction of gaze – Week 1: 80% looked down to the stairs – Week 2: 85% looked up at the walls
  40. 40. Frequency of items seen through Looxcie 120 100 80 60 40 Week 1 20 0 Week 2
  41. 41. ‘Seen’ v. ‘Remembered’ items (Week 1) 120 100 80 60 Looxcie Survey 40 20 0 Door Sign Petrie Logo Quote 1 Quote 3
  42. 42. ‘Seen’ v. ‘Remembered’ (Week 2) 100 90 80 70 60 50 40 30 20 10 0 Looxcie Survey
  43. 43. ‘Seen’ but not ‘remembered’
  44. 44. But is size everything? • Biggest discrepancy between ‘seen’ (86%) and ‘remembered’ (14%) • Produced at A1 size • Positioned on the second landing
  45. 45. Stelae in situ
  46. 46. Dwell time (rough!) • Items which appeared in the viewfinder for >1 second more often than <1 second • Week 1 – Door sign • Week 2 – Quote 1 – Quote 3 – Petrie on his Dig • How do you interpret that? • A difference in ‘functional’ viewing and ‘image’ focused viewing?
  47. 47. Interpretation? • Evidence of under-stimulation (the overreporting of recalled images in week 1) • Evidence of design overload (the underreporting of recalled images in week 2) • Embodied experience of looking – Rhythm – Head alignment
  48. 48. Week 2 items with highest ‘dwell’ time
  49. 49. What I would do differently • • • • • Use proper eye-tracking glasses Calibrate it all properly Select sample more carefully Interview participants about what they saw Compare it with footage taken from in the gallery spaces
  50. 50. Evaluation of the ‘Museum Players’ New Walk Museum and Art Gallery
  51. 51. Key question • Would the presence of actors ‘performing’ improvised roles of the ‘engaged visitor’ influence visitor behaviour?
  52. 52. Evaluation tools • • • • Survey (pilot study questionnaire in 2011) Hand-drawn maps of visitor flow Field notes What we wanted to do but did not... – Video footage captured by cameras worn by the actors – Problems with ethics and covert recording
  53. 53. Hand drawn maps
  54. 54. Collating the maps (manually) • Pilot study – 237 people walked through (1/3) – 461 people took a pathway with at least one dwell point or a movement away from the main thoroughfare.
  55. 55. Visitor Flow during visit Straight through Deviation No actor Individual Actor 66% 33% 37% 63% No actor Group of Actors 64% 36% 61% 39%
  56. 56. What we would do differently • Digitally enabled production of the visitor routes? – Collected straight onto an iPad or tablet • Digitally enabled analysis – Scanning multiple maps to establish dominant pathways
  57. 57. Results: Field notes • On several occasions we witnessed unequivocally, the Museum Players influence visitors by simple non-verbal communication in the form of modeling and copying. Visitors would be distracted by what they were doing or from their set path by the Player standing still and reading the signs. We saw clearly the visitor follow the modelling activity of the Player turning their head towards the stairs and then copy another Player who went up the stairs.
  58. 58. More field notes • When the Players with instructions to seek interaction with visitors did so, there were also interesting results. The more gregarious of our Players politely approached a visitor in the foyer who was about to exit the foyer into the museum. The visitor was asked about a certain gallery and as they didn’t know the answer the visitor paused before indicating that the reception desk might help. The visitor accompanied our Player to the desk and made sure they got an answer. Instead of then carrying on their original path into the museum, the visitor paused, turned back to the desk and proceeded to ask several other questions. Of course, perhaps our absent minded visitor had intended to do this all along but it is easy to see how this visitor may have been unobtrusively aided by our Player.
  59. 59. Survey responses (New Walk) • Increase in words relating to ambience (welcome, bright) and information • But....a very small sample size

×